The Hon Minister for Transport Simon O’Brien officially opened the Geraldton Southern Transport Corridor Stage Two on 6 December 2009.
The ribbon cutting ceremony involved: the Member for Geraldton MLA Ian Blayney, City of Geraldton Greenough Major Ian Carpenter, Abigroup Contractors General Manager Maurice Dessauvagie, Acting Commissioner Main Roads Des Snook and three students from Geraldton Secondary College - Denney Datta-Johnson, Flynn Drage and Nick Ioannidis. These students were awarded scholarships for further study at Tertiary colleges.
Earlier in the day, more than 50 cyclists from the Spokes Cyclist Group took the opportunity to participate in a race on the new highway.
On 7 December 2009, after some minor adjustments and completion of the traffic signals at the North West Coastal Highway intersection, it was opened to traffic. Early feedback from users indicated immediate satisfaction from the improvement when compared to the previous journey on the old Geraldton Mt Magnet Road through the residential areas.
Stage Two of the Geraldton Southern Transport Corridor project involved construction of a single east - west carriageway from North West Coastal Highway to the Geraldton Mt Magnet Road, which is a distance of about 8.7 km. The new road provides improved access to Geraldton Port and Geraldton Airport.
The $44 million project included provision for upgrading the new road to dual carriageway and for other local roads to be connected in the future, should this be necessary.
Abigroup Contractors Pty Ltd was awarded the Design and Construct Contract on 21 August 2008. The Contract period was 18 months with the design and construction staged over that period. The project work onsite in Geraldton commenced in December 2008 with the construction of the shared path along Currell Way and fencing of the Corridor, while major earthworks commenced on the Highway in January 2009. The opening of the new Highway two and a half months ahead of schedule and well under budget is a credit to Abigroup Contractors and Main Roads.
The direct east-west link to the Geraldton Port and alternative route for freight vehicles was scheduled for completion when port operations were predicted to reach peak activity. The project improved the access, safety and efficiency of the road transport industry in Geraldton at a time when it was most needed.
Community consultation with directly affected residents and the wider community commenced in February 2008.
A Construction Reference Group (CRG) met four times, in September 2008, January 2009, March 2009 and June 2009 with further meetings as the works progressed. The aim of the CRG was to provide input into aspects of the detailed design and construction of the project.
Geraldton Southern Transport Corridor Stage 2